Break Night: Slang for staying up all night on a cocaine binge until daybreak.

Regular disclaimers apply.


Break Night

Chapter I : Welcome To The Jungle
Axel Steel

"Ahh, fuck," I watch Riku as he tosses his head back, snorting loudly while he plugs his nostrils with his thumb and index finger. He shakes his head a few times and stares up at the ceiling; I look up too just to see if there are any crazy patterns playing against the off-white paint. To my disappointment there isn't anything but that horrible excuse of a colour, though I sort of knew what to expect. I've been staring at his ceiling on and off again since we came back from the club.

It reminds me of hospital food, or maybe even baby food all bland and lifeless— his ceiling that is, not the club. Baby food doesn't even have salt, and basically everything with some sort of flavor has salt. That gets me thinking, what do babies think while they eat that crap? Do they even realize all the other things they could be tasting and experiencing are a million times better? Well I guess they don't because they don't know about the other things, all they know about is shitting, eating that mush and sleeping. I wish I could remember what I was like as a baby (all gummy smiles, soft skin and innocence). But as fate would have it, I've taken too many baseball bats and fists to the head, and smoked too much dope to have enough brain cells to actually remember that far back.

I do remember my childhood, like when you really start living like a human being and you're not just a mass of flesh and spit. I remember once when I was five, I stood outside of a red pick up while my mom went to get money for her fix. She told me to hold her cigarette 'cause she'd only be five minutes and I held it, but out of nowhere the thought of actually trying it popped into my tiny head and well, I did. I took a puff of the cigarette and almost puked out my grape juice because it was rancid. Funny thing is, I took another puff and by the time my mom stepped out of the pick up truck, hoarking out thick spit and wiping her mouth on the back of her hand, her cigarette was almost finished. I stood there like a pro, cancer stick in-between my middle and index finger as I took a drag, just like dear ol'mama. She didn't scream at me though, she just plucked it out of my fingers and took the last drag, crushing it under the leather tip of her metal heel stiletto and grabbed my hand. She pulled me away from the red pick up truck and took me to her dealer's house. Ah, good times…as if.

"Hey Ku, what you staring at?" I ask, pushing the thought of my mother out of my head and he looks at me, his eyes look like their glowing as the sun rises off in the horizon. Its rays shinning through the window and into his teal coloured irises, making his platinum hair seem almost white. He's always been this really handsome guy, ever since I met him in elementary, though I don't know why he'd change. Good-looking kids naturally grow up to be good-looking adults or whatever.

When I met him, he was beating the shit out of an eighth grader because the guy said his mother was a whore. I stood there watching until he pulled away from the curled up boy, who was at least 10 sizes bigger. The big boy was muttering apologies, begging him to stop and Riku looked at me all-tough like, his fist cocked and asked if I wanted a go, because he was totally fucking ready. It was then that I realized this kid was a fucking spastic mess and in my head, I added it all up. I was sly and clever being able to work my way out of a fight because, if you want to know the hard, honest truth, I can't fight at all. Anyway, I realized that should the situation ever arise where I couldn't talk my way out of something, I'd need muscle. We've been together ever since and he's grown on me over the years.

I found out later, I mean a lot later, that he had been born a snow baby (though he tells me his mom didn't use as much during pregnancy) which explains why he's so fucked in the head and spastic. I also found out that his mom actually was a whore, but she's dead so saying anything like that is just rude. You can insult a guy's father till you're blue in the face and he'd probably not give a damn, but say something about his mother and he'll impale you Vlad Tepes style. I know I'm like that, actually, I think all men are like that. Mothers are sacred.

"The ceiling, what's it look like?" he replies and I go to say baby food, but I see the smirk and I shake my head instead, ignoring his smart-ass comment. After spending half my life with Riku, I've learnt to let it all slide because it's never really worth an argument. He's just like that, waiting for the moment to pounce, because even if we're best friends, Riku lives for the chance to wrestle someone to the ground. He passes the mirror to me, along with the little cut up, red straw that I pinch between my fingers, bending the plastic a little as I stare at it. I don't know why I do; it's probably because the red looks way too bright between my boney fingers. Riku watches me curiously until I place the mirror on the coffee table and lean over.

Snort, tilt your head back, and stare up at the ceiling even if there is never anything there. Hope never dies, does it? No. It doesn't.

It's almost a ritual between Riku and me, looking at the ceiling after your rail. We've been doing this ever since his older brother (May God keep his soul) became a coke dealer and decided, like any good male role-model, to give his little brother and his friends free blow. It was probably because we never had a lot of food and he didn't want Riku starving to death. He just gave him a little coke to suppress his hunger, or at least I think that's why. He could have just been bored and wanted to see us trip out, who knows what really went on in his head. He was totally fucked. However, he did keep us from doing it every day, he kept us leveled and made sure we'd stay in school. He was a good person like that, aside from his insanity; he did have a mother hen like persona.

I remember once, when he bent over (even if I was almost his height) and ruffled our hair. Both Riku and I had our natural hair colours (Riku blonde, me brown), he said, "You're great kids, stay that way no matter what you do because the drugs live for you, you don't live for the drugs.", and I've lived my life by that since.

I snort once more and rub my thumb over the faint traces of white powder, then press the pad of my thumb to my lips, rubbing the residue into my gums until my mouth goes numb. I pass the mirror back to Riku. I hate the way blow tastes, it sort of has this earwax like flavor and it makes me nicker like a horse, puffing my cheeks out and scrunching my nose kind of retardedly. Riku never says anything about it and never has, though I know he sees it and hears me making weird noises in the background. Riku though, doesn't care much about the taste. I mean, as a fetus he was practically submerged in the stuff so he doesn't even notice it (I'm probably more than just exaggerating).

He empties more blow onto the mirror and grabs his razor. He's had it since we were sophomores, given to him by his brother when he deemed us man enough to crush our own coke. Riku's never used another razor and takes care of that one with his life, heaven forbid he misplaces it. Come to think of it though, I wouldn't want to use a different one either. I dread to think what's going to happen when that thing finally dulls down to the point of no fixing. His brother didn't live long enough to see us actually use the razor; he was shot to death in his apartment a few hours later while filling baggies. My memory fails me when it comes to the exact details of what led to it, but I'm sure it had something to do with owning someone money.

I've never actually had to comfort someone crying, and when Riku started to cry that night, I was so awkward about holding him, especially since I was all sexually confused as the experts now-a-days say. I'll admit, I bawled like a baby when Kadaj died but not around Riku. Riku, if you get him drunk enough and start talking about his brother, will still cry tears of blood, even six years later. That will probably be the only time you'll ever see the great Riku Jones cry. Shortly after, Riku became a real dealer, not just selling the baggies his brother would spare him.

Come to think of it, I never made Riku face the awkwardness of comforting someone, not because I've never needed it but because I never wanted to cry in front of him. However, he probably would have comforted me if I had. Anyway, when I was called to the morgue to identify my mother, who'd been missing for the greater half of a month, I didn't start crying until later that night when I was alone, holding that one lock of hair they give you.

In the morgue, I just glanced down at the porcelain face of my junkie mother who'd been found in a gutter (so damn cliché, I know). Her brown hair matted down with blood and other filth, yet I thought she was beautiful. She was my mother, she'd always be beautiful. Anyway, I was 17 at the time and when we got back to the apartment, this one we live in now, I went to shower and cried harder than I ever had in my life.

"Isn't there a rule about doing your own drugs?" I chuckle, forcing Kadaj and my mother out of my mind and focusing on the way Riku makes rails. It's like an art to him, carefully setting them up and making sure they are all similar in thickness. I'd say he takes his time but really it only takes him a few seconds. Riku looks up after snorting a fat line of coke. He smirks at me and wipes the bottom of his nose, because having residue there is always awkward and uncomfortable, and he sniffles a bit before being able to properly answer.

"Yeah, but I've been breaking rules since day one," he says cockily and leans down, snorting the next line like a pro before pushing the mirror to me. He tilts his head back as I grab the mirror from him. Riku breathes deeply before dipping his pinky into a baggie, and rubbing it against his gums, as I did not too long ago. He doesn't even flinch at the taste, instead his jaw starts sliding back and forth and I know he's so high right now he can fucking run his fingers through the Almighty's beard way up in heaven.

"Always the rebel," I say before snorting up my own two lines. I start thinking, remembering this conversation I had with a girl one time. She was a real die-hard feminist, and she told me, that god was a female. Every now and again, I think about her and about what she said. Well, in my mind God (if it even exists) would have to be asexual because he made people in his own image so therefore he can't be a man or a woman.

I'll stop right there though, because if I start going into religion I will blow a gasket.

We hear a loud knock at the door and Riku jumps a few feet into the air, clutching at his chest and shoots me a look, his eyes wide and pupils dilated to the point where his teal iris is only a thin outline. He's already panicking and his fingers are twitching as he stares at the white door then at me over and over. I look at it too, a hell of a lot calmer than my wired friend, though I'll admit that my heart's also pounding and it isn't just because of the vast amounts of cocaine in my system. We both realize around the same time that the only people coming by our apartment at the break of dawn are Demyx and Zexion. He gets up just as I wipe the mirror with my finger; he swings the door open as I rub the powder along my gum line, and by God does this ever taste foul.

Demyx runs in, jumps over the couch's backrest like a gymnast and I'd give him a 7.5 if I was a judge, I mean he has form and all but it's just not refined or anything. Then again what would I know? I've never even seen one of those competitions in my life. I've seen an air guitar competition though, while I was at this dude's house. I watched it while I gave him head…it gave me something to concentrate on rather than the way his pubes tickled the tip of my nose when I swallowed him. But that's a different time.

Zexion waltzes in at a much slower pace than Demyx. He's one of those quiet types, the type of guy that usually starts the massacres at schools and everyone is always like 'but he was such a nice kid'. Which is why I try and always stay on his good side, that way if he should snap one day, I won't be on the opposite side of his barrel. Riku disappears into the kitchen, probably to slow his heart rate before he has a heart attack.

"Hey, you guys doing lines?" Demyx, one of my closest buddies, says, always one to point out the obvious. As if Riku and I spend our time doing anything else.

"Yeah dude, pull out a straw," I drawl, my knee jumping to a steady beat that's not too clear to me though I'm pretty sure it's Thunder Struck by AC fucking DC.

I'm in love with classic Rock n' Roll and I think I will be till the end of time. Sure, I like some music from modern times but Rock n' Roll really captures my life and paints it out perfectly. Like, what was that song called again? Old Time Rock n' Roll, I think…Yeah, that's a good fucking song. I can't relate much to Lady Gaga, mostly because I don't know what the fuck she is talking about half the time and I just can't concentrate past her weird, fucking ridiculous clothes.

I'd like to think that if anyone ever decided to make a movie about me; its soundtrack would be all Guns, Queen, Zeppelin and all those other blow-your-fucking-mind bands that really get the party started, because I'd like to think that I get the party fucking started. People in my life movie would definitely all be wearing normal clothes. Sorry.

"'Course, 'cause you know, I keep one in my wallet," Demyx laughs, but pulls out his wallet and retracts a straw from its depths. Of course he keeps one in his wallet, why wouldn't he? Then again, Demyx has always been more of a weed type of person. But you just can't be best friends with a coke dealer (Riku) and his sidekick (me) without doing blow every now and then. It just isn't the way these things work.

I notice all the bills neatly stacked in between the leather of his old wallet and I smirk at him, raising a nicely penciled in red eyebrow. It pisses me off when people dye their hair and leave their eyebrows a different fucking colour and it doesn't even look nice. I mean, there's classical arched black eyebrows and blonde hair but that's just…a classic. You can't say bad things about classics.

Now, when your eyebrows clash with your hair, you aren't doing something right in life. This is why I pencil in my eyebrows, well that and because I burnt them off thinking there were gremlins living in their depths. Once they were gone, never to return, I realized that no, gremlins would probably live in your ear or something. Somewhere dark and cave-like, not in your eyebrows.

"Mum and dad's pay day?" I ask with a smirk that just does not want to leave my face, but that is partially because of the blow pumping in my veins. Blow makes me happy.

Demyx just laughs loudly, dumping a bit of coke on the mirror for himself, probably stoned already; he tilts his head in Zexion's direction, the quiet boy just sitting there like he always does. I swear I've heard him talk like three times in all the years of knowing him, at first I even thought he was mute or something.

"Yo Z, bring out the weed…it's time the party starts for real," Demyx says before picking up the razor and creating four neat little lines. He never met Kadaj, but he heard the stories from a very drunk and depressed Riku (I told you he still cries tears of blood). Demyx was real cool about it, he picked up the razor, and kissed it with the same tenderness an old catholic lady would kiss the Pope's gold and diamond studded fingers. He hugged Riku then and told him while holding the razor high up, that Kadaj was livin' large now like someone of his caliber should because just from hearing Riku talk, Demyx knew Kadaj was a great person, apparently.

I wish I could have been as comforting as Demyx. I mean, because the way Riku's face lit up…it was like he'd found peace. I remember that even Zexion had said something to Riku, it was real quiet, and he put his tiny pale-as-hell hand on Riku's shoulder. Till this day I don't know what he said, it was just in Riku's ear and Demyx didn't seem to mind much. I mean…if the person I was madly in love with whispered in another dude's ear, I'd be pissed, but it was Riku so I don't think he cared. Whatever Zexion said made Riku tear up and hug the shit out of the boy. If I think too much about it, I get really curious.

Demyx snorts the two lines up easily, then dips his fingers in the near by glass of water and slides them up his nose quickly like he always does. I've never asked him why, because I've never cared enough to actually ask. I know other people do it, I just don't know why. People assume that because I've been doing drugs for the greater half of my life, that I know everything there is to know about drug use, but the truth is, I really don't. I just do them, I don't research the shit. I would have stayed in school if I wanted to research bullshit.

Demyx pushes the mirror in Zexion's direction as the pale midget pulls a blunt from his coat pocket and passes it to Demyx. The thing is the size of a baseball bat, and I'm not exaggerating this time. "Some of us have to work," I say but I pull out my Zippo, flicking off the top with a twist of my wrist and Demyx rolls his big ol' baby blues at me because, who am I kidding? I could care less about going to work completely ruined. No one would notice anyway because I work in this crumby little café that only has its rush hour around 5:30 pm, and by that time I'm long gone.

"Axel Steel saying no to drugs?" Riku shouts from wherever he is and I have to laugh at that before turning back to Demyx with my lighter.

"Oh, what a gentleman," Demyx laughs as the blunt lights easily and he takes a long drag. The reason he called me a gentleman is that at The Red Label and probably many other clubs, it means you want to fuck the person if you light their cigarette for them. It's a polite way of showing it I guess, instead of walking right up to them and saying "Wanna do the dog?"

I always found that amusing and I've spent countless nights lighting the cigarette upon cigarette of random people, just for the amusement.

Demyx's eyes flutter closed as if he's orgasming and my mouth waters at the sight of the blunt because if there is one thing I love as much as coke and classic rock, it's fucking weed. I remember being told once by someone that giraffes have THC in their blood, which leads to me wondering if giraffes walk around stoned 24/7 since birth. If that's the case, I know what I want to come back as in the next life. I want to be a fucking giraffe.

"Fuck Riku, play some music!" I say, forgetting about work and giraffes, gazing at the silver haired idiot who's sitting on the dinning room table. A table that hasn't been used since the night we bought it and dragged it home from that hippie rummage sale. Riku looks at me and smirks, knowing that I have this insatiable urge to listen to music whenever I'm tweaking. For a minute he seems like he isn't going to play music but then he slides off the table and dances over to the stereo system. My knee is jumping at a quick pace, there isn't even a beat anymore and Demyx looks at it as he passes the blunt over to me. His eyes seem entranced with the movement and he watches my knee through the tear in my jeans.

"This is real good shit. I got it from Xigbar, who got it from some Mexicans his dealer smuggled over the boarder," Demyx says, tearing his eyes away from my whiter-than-the-moon knee as I take a hit. Immediately, it rushes through me and my head swirls right into the fucking clouds. So high I almost head butt God's vagina or…shit…head butt something because I remember that God doesn't have a gender, and for a few seconds I'm kind of confused until I think...Fuck it. I smirk around the blunt in my mouth and take another puff. It tastes like chocolate.

Welcome to the Jungle starts blaring and I shoot up from my seat as Riku slides into the living room on his knees, fingers dancing along an invisible fret as he tries to follow Slash's amazing skill with his own. In his mind, he's got a guitar to play. Demyx automatically starts playing the air drums and I tilt my head back and sing "Oh my god…Wooooooooooooo!"

Riku's guitar really amazes me, or well his air guitar. I know he can play this song off memory, so seeing him pretend is almost as good as seeing the real deal. I just gotta use my imagination is all, and I'm fairly good at using it. Demyx seems to have a real drum kit in front of him, with the way he's tapping at the air and using his foot to pound on the imaginary pedal. My parts coming up again…

"Welcome to the jungle, we got fun n' games. We got everything you want, honey we know the names!"

After the first words are spoken, it starts us all up. Everyone's shouting out the lyrics, playing their invisible instruments (except for Zexion), while I swing around my invisible microphone, pelvic thrusting to the beat of the song. I was told once, that I should probably do something about my out-of-control sex drive. But my sex drive is perfectly under control as long as I'm not turning to fucking animals. I know for a fact that I'd never defile a furry critter. I mean, that could be considered rape and that's just not my bag of tea, plus…they aren't even human. The person who said that about me just couldn't handle so much sex appeal in one sitting. I'm a very sexual being; I think it's in my genes or something.

"We are the people that can find whatever you may need. If you got the money honey, we got your disease!"

Zexion watches us, a smirk on his lips as he holds the blunt for Demyx, who takes two tokes then Zexion passes it to me. I sing around it, taking my hits as I walk towards Riku who takes it from me just as his guitar solo pounds out of the speakers.

I love this part so I throw my head back; using the voice I usually reserve for singing at The Red Label and just belt it out.

"And when you're high you never ever wanna come down, so down, so down, so down YEEEEEEEEEAH-AH-AH-AAAAH-AAAH-AAH-AAAH!"

Riku holds the slowly shrinking blunt between his lips and his fingers play out the notes on the air guitar at an inhuman speed, I bet if he had his real guitar out, it would sound so fucking amazing.

"You know where you are? You're in the jungle baby…you're gonna dieeee!"

This lasts until the neighbors start punching their side of the wall and we're forced to lower the volume. Unless we want the coppers dropping by and finding tons of coke all over the coffee table and then some in the bedroom and 4 blazed men in an apartment. That is never easy to explain and really, I don't want to suck off another cop to avoid being jailed. You're probably thinking, Whoa hold the phone Buddy, you sucked off a cop? Well yeah, I did.

I was 16 at the time and the cop was a real nasty pig. He said he'd let us all go, scotch free, if the precious lips doing all the smack talk would blow him, and me being a big mouth…well, naturally I was the one doing all the sassing. So, I braced myself and dropped to my knees, I was drunk and drunks have no shame.

Riku was telling me it wasn't worth it and that going to jail ain't so bad but I knew for a fact that it was. We'd be going in for quite some time for possession and assault (because Riku attacked the cop), plus whatever lies this sonuvabitch threw in there. I also didn't like the idea of being shanked and raped at the same time. Plus, it seems like dick sucking is a talent in my family (must be hereditary or something) because I've always been really good at it. I had the pig busting a nut in my mouth in 5 minutes flat and I spit that shit right near his shoe. We got away with it, and I've lived perfectly fine with myself after that. Though, I know that copper won't ever be able to find someone to give him head as good as me.

I sit down, smirking as the blunt is passed off to Demyx again, and Riku drops down at my feet, smiling like a kid on Christmas morning. Demyx sighs taking a drag, then seems to remember something; he's probably been meaning to tell us for a month or so knowing him.

"Hey, you guys remember the twins you wanted to tag-team?" he says randomly and I sit up a little straighter grabbing the blunt from Demyx. My brain provides the memory of blonde, wispy hair and sky blue eyes. There were these twins that bought drugs off Riku that we wanted to fuck in high school. I wouldn't say exactly tag-team because two sacs smacking together is alright, four just has to be crossing the line. Though, I'd probably be able to get off with Riku in the room, both of us fucking at the same time but not touching each other. I have a thing where hearing people moan really turns me on, regardless of who the hell they are.

"Yeah, what about them?" Riku asks taking a swig from a can of Coca-Cola that he produced from God knows where while I pass down the blunt. His voice holds a hint of interest; I'm surprised and impressed that he remembers the twins from way back when, though it wasn't that long ago. If my math doesn't fail me, like it always has, it's been three or four years. After graduation, they left the city, no one really knows where or at least I don't.

"They're coming back, moving in with Kairi and Naminé," Demyx says, pulling at the rest of the blunt and crushing it into the ashtray. The apartment probably smells so much like weed, it'd be enough to get someone stoned if they just took a good, hard wiff of our couch or something. I'd have to try that later after work.

"Kairi stopped talking to me," Riku groans, tossing his head back, successfully landing it in my lap and I look down at him smirking. Kairi is this girl we also met in high school. She's a fucking crazy ass bitch who'll do anything for a really good time, though when she's sober she's pretty cool but seldom are the times when she's not on something. She kind of smells like fruit and ocean mist, and she's a bit of an airhead but I guess that's what happens when you've been popping pills and all the other shit she does since you were 10.

"Guess you didn't satisfy her, cause she still talks to me," I say, really just to push his buttons because in all honesty Kairi and me didn't really do anything. I ended up puking all over myself and Vexen appeared out of nowhere and fucked her while I passed out on the floor. Riku tries to head butt me backwards, though it doesn't work as well as he probably hoped and it looks funny as hell.

"No, it's 'cause I fucked her sister in the morning," he laughs happily and I smirk down at him, eyebrow raised high and he smirks back.

"Naminé?" I ask and he nods, I extend my hand for the high five, which he gives with a laugh. "Got me some of that too," I say as he slaps his palm against mine. With Naminé I actually got somewhere, though we were both tripping on Special K and Ecstasy at the time and really didn't know where we were or what we were doing. Naminé's a real soft girl, though underneath that shy, quiet exterior lies something dark and a little frightening. I speak from experience here. She's sort of like Zexion, in the quiet, would-be-most-likely-to-kill-someone type of way, though I'm more scared of the blonde than I am of him. She just isn't right in the head. I mean, while I was fucking her, she told me to call her all these horrible names, I was so fucked I didn't even notice until the next morning when I remembered. I felt like shit but she told me to shut up and left when I apologized.

Demyx rolls his eyes, but laughs anyway. "So, how long has it been since y'all slept?" Demyx says after a while, leaning against Zexion as the boy channel surfs with wide (or at least I think they're wide), blood shot eyes, and I watch them feeling a longing twist in my chest.

Demyx is so in love with the blue-haired guy, it's kind of sickeningly sweet. One day, I think I'll find that. Actually, I have to find that for my own sanity. I need to know love really exists because I've never felt it in my life before and contrary to popular belief, children that have grown up in loveless homes can love. I know I can love, I just haven't found them yet, you know? The one person I want to give my heart and soul to.

"Since yesterday's show," I reply shaking the thoughts of love out of my head and Riku nods his head making Demyx snort loudly. He's already passing the one paper he got from God knows where to Riku who takes a hit and passes it up to me. I don't know if I should take it or not…I'm pretty fucked up already…I've never said no to a joint before though. I take it, with some difficulty because for some reason I just know it's going to burn me. Riku and I stay there for quite some time trying to transfer the thing and when I finally get it, I wiggle with excitement, causing Riku to laugh.

"When's the next show?" Riku asks after he's done laughing at me. He slowly stretches across the carpet, holding his head up on his palm as he watches the colours dance around on the TV screen. His jaw sliding back and forth.

I pass the joint back to Demyx, exhaling as I lean over Riku and shrug my shoulders, turning to watch whatever Zexion put on. It's this kids cartoon, seeing as it's the only thing that plays at seven in the morning no one complains, plus its trippy shit…which makes it good.

"I'm pretty sure it's tomorrow night at The Red Label," Demyx says and I groan before looking around the living room, realizing my agenda is nowhere to be found.

"I'll check in my agenda," I say out loud and everyone laughs at me, the apartment filling with the sounds of gasped breaths and snorts as everyone chokes on air at my expense. The sounds of them laughing make me burst out laughing. I have no idea how I'm going to be able to work like this.

"I can't believe a fucking druggie keeps an agenda," Riku says, his jaw still working away at grinding his teeth down to nothing and I glare at him, before laughing at the absolute truth behind that.

"Someone's gotta keep our shit organized…Now shut up and stop tweaking," I say reaching into my back pocket and tossing him my pack of gum before pulling out my cigarettes and lighting up, because on top of everything I'm addicted to nicotine.

Riku takes the gum with a smile, passing it to Demyx who claims that eating gum while stoned is an utter trip. He yelps in happiness, popping a piece into his mouth and chomping down on the sugary stick.

"Fuck, I have to be at work in an hour," I hiss, standing to get ready for work. Because unlike Demyx and Zexion who are well provided for by Demyx's stinking rich family, with his fat ass bank account, and Riku who's job is sitting around all day and dealing drugs, I have to go clock in at a café down the street no later then 8:30 am to earn my money. I stand up and stretch, telling everyone I'm off to shower and they laugh at me as I grumble about low paying jobs and ugly aprons.

I walk into the bathroom, literally the first time. Smacking into the door hard, putting out my cigarette with it before realizing I have to turn the knob and open the door. Finally I get inside, throwing my crushed cigarette butt into the toilet, pealing off my clothes and tossing them into the corner of the room. The chains on my pants rattle as they hit the tiles, making me giggle a little. I stop long enough to turn on the tap, hot water (almost boiling) starts pouring out and I step under quickly. My body feeling strangely grimy or maybe that's just the drugs or the fact that I haven't showered in 8 days give or take.

I hear Riku and Demyx yelling about something on TV, scrambling to get the phone because Riku simply needs whatever the infomercial is showing. Demyx already shouting out his credit card number, but then I decide to listen to the water as it pounds against the porcelain under my feet and against my body. It sounds like a waterfall or a rainstorm and I just listen to it, closing my eyes and imagining a rainforest bustling with life. Animals skittering all around in the grand ecosystem as I stand under the heavy rainfall, arms spread out wide as I inhale the humid air into my lungs. Finally something that won't tic years off my life's clock. I realize how great this is and that I have to call Demyx and make him listen because I know he loves water and nature.

"Dem!" I scream loudly and hear him rush down the hall and into the bathroom, another set of footsteps is heard and I can see two heads from behind the shower curtain as the door bursts open. One is definitely Demyx, his spiky mullet showing clearly, then I see a smooth head and know its Riku.

"What's going on?" he asks, and I laugh loudly.

"Since when are you Demyx?" I tease and Riku chuckles before I explain to them why I called Demyx into the bathroom. "Shut up and listen, it sounds like rain…and feels like, you're standing in the rainforest cause of the humid air, in the middle of all these trees and just…at peace," I breathe and they go dead silent, standing there just listening to the hot water as I lather myself up and watch the suds swirl down the drain. I try not to get grossed out because the water sort of washes away with a grey tint.

"Shit…it does," Demyx says quietly and I start shampooing my hair, traces of red dye trickling down and disappearing right after the soap. It looks like a peppermint candy or something.

I notice they stay standing there for a while, I can see them every time I turn, but I don't run them out just yet. Bathrooms can get really lonely sometimes and just having them standing there is comforting. I'm almost done though, so they'll have to leave.

"You can both leave now, I'm coming out," I say rinsing out my hair and they laugh before rushing out of the bathroom when I turn off the tap. I step out and wrap my hair in the black towel Riku and I use whenever we dye our hair. It's impossible to get hair dye out of towels once it's in there, and we don't have plenty of nice towels to go around ruining.

I walk out of the bathroom, casting a glance down the hall towards where the guys are sitting. They are still there watching the television as I walk into my room and get dressed for work, wearing a long sleeve shirt under my uniform shirt. I can feel the wet tips of my hair soaking through my two shirts and I don't really have enough time to blow dry it.

The reason I have to wear two shirts is that my boss doesn't like my body art and insists that I hide my tattoos with a long sleeve. I do, just to avoid problems. Half of the time though, my sleeves are rolled up because he's never around to see it. He also doesn't like my piercings but there is nothing I can do about that. The customers don't seem to mind, I've been asked to explain the meanings of my ink so many times and usually have people sticking around or coming back. My appearance even attracts herds of near-by college students for lunch, so he should be grateful.

I sneak past them, tip toeing carefully though I'm not sure why. They always come with me in the mornings, so it's not like I wanted to leave without them noticing. I stop at the door and just stare at them for a few minutes waiting to see if they'd notice. It's not very surprising that they don't notice me, I mean, they are all huddled over Demyx's cell phone, pointing and talking about something.

"Kay, I'm heading out…who's coming for breakfast?" I shout, tugging open the door and slipping on my sneakers, Demyx shoots up and Riku scrambles to his feet as well, Zexion as always gets up a lot calmer than the two nut jobs.

"I'm starved!" Demyx whines as he grips Zexion's hand and walks out the door, shoving me out of the way as I slip my wayfarer sunglasses on. My eyes are always super sensitive to the light after staying awake for a long amount of time. Riku hands me a tiny baggie of coke and smiles that bright, handsome smile of his.

"You'll need this to make it through your shift," he says and pats his pockets looking for keys, finding them he smirks triumphantly.

"I'm going to go do a run after breakfast, and then I'll meet you at the café for lunch," he says as we walk out and he locks the door, I nod my head as we walk out together.

"So, what do you think about the twins being back in town?" I ask, placing a cigarette between my lips and keeping step with Riku as he slides on his aviator glasses and ties his hair back and away from his face. He looks so amazing, the sunlight washing over his tanned, perfect skin, his hair so fucking shinny that I sort of stare at him from the corner of my eye, soaking in his appearance. I know whoever else is around is probably staring at him too.

I wish that I was as attractive as him, but instead I'm this awkwardly proportioned bean pole. My hands are too big and my hips too wide, I have a long skinny neck and a pointed chin, and let's not forget my rather…large ears. I'm not the best looking guy out there, the only thing people constantly compliment me on are my eyes and hair, which is about it. Other than that, I've got diddly-squat going for me.

"Well, I never talked to 'em much outside of deals, you know? They seemed pretty cool though. Hopefully we'll see 'em around Red Label, rock their world," Riku smirks as he pulls his cell phone out of his pocket and checks the time. It's 8:10 am and we're getting closer to the café.

"What possessed you to work in a café?" Riku asks after I stay quiet. I blow smoke in his direction with a scowl on my face. He knows just how much I hate working in that stupid little café, yet he always makes fun of me for it.

"It's close to home, plus I don't have to pay for whatever I eat," I say with a shrug and we turn, entering the little corner café with a ding of the doorbell. It's pretty empty, except for Demyx and Zexion, who've already found a booth and are sitting down waving Riku over. I slide over the counter and rip my apron off the hangers, slipping it over my head and tying my hair back. It air-dried which means it's currently sticking up in every direction. I brush a few bangs away from my face and stare with immense boredom towards the door. I shoot a look towards the guys and they wave, smiling brightly.

"Oh, Baristaa!" Demyx shouts, laughing crazily along with Riku. Zexion just chuckling quietly to himself as Demyx sways around on the cushiony couch. I glare angrily and flip him the bird, smirking when he frowns.

"Come take our order!" He screams a little louder than necessary and I mouth 'fuck off' with a smirk and turn my head away to play with my lip studs. He gets up and stomps over to me, placing his hands on his hips when he stops in front of the counter, directly in my line of vision. I stare at his Led Zeppelin T-shirt, the falling angel on the front has my eyes glued to his chest and he clears his throat making me look up with a crazed smile, he giggles.

"What can I get you guys today?" I ask with a false cheerful tone, pulling on one of the tiny silver balls under my bottom lip and batting my eyelashes. I always try a different Barista persona whenever I'm in charge of the cashier (which I always am) and Demyx laughs before he looks up at the menu. I know exactly what he's going to get though. One strawberry banana smoothie with a Boston Crème donut, Zexion's going to get black coffee, that's it, and Riku is going to get Raspberry Iced Tea with two sugars and a slice of banana bread with some melted butter on top.

"Ah shut the hell up Axel, you know exactly what we want!" Riku calls from his seat and I send him a wink just as the doorbells chime signaling the arrival of a new customer. I look at them over Demyx's shoulder, and right away, I smirk seeing Xigbar walking towards us.

"I knew I'd find all you bitches here," Xigbar says with a laugh, and I roll my eyes turning as Demyx tells him to go fuck something dead and rotting. That is more than a little disgusting but I won't tell Demyx that, and that's probably because it's just Xigbar he's saying it to. I mean…I don't really give a fuck. Xigbar's one nasty fucker, he can take it, I'm sure. It's not like Demyx was saying that to a baby, then I'd think any normal human being would tell him to tone it down. Or maybe they'd knock his lights out because really, why would you say that to a child?

Anyway, I throw the whole banana into the blender, because it's Demyx and because it's going in the fucking blender, what difference does it make if I chop it up or not? The strawberries are tossed in next, turning the banana and the milk a soft pink colour. Everything's just thrown on top of a mountain of ice cubes. I leave that once it's done (or as done as it's gonna be) and skip over to the coffee machines, preparing the stupid filter and everything before finally starting the coffee. Riku's tea is next. I never asked them why they all have to get a completely different beverage, but if you look at each drink…It matches them perfectly.

Black Coffee for Zexion who probably thinks his soul is black, when he sees a window he wants it painted black, no colours anymore, he wants them to turn black. Na na na na na na, na na na nanana, guitar solo!

Demyx get a strawberry banana smoothie because it just does not get any gayer than that. I mean, it's pink and really sweet. Plus, don't only girls drink smoothies?

And Riku gets raspberry tea because it's slightly bitter, so it's not a fully queer drink but it's still pink and fucking faggy just like him.

All the while, I listen to Demyx talking to Xigbar. Apparently, if my eaves dropping doesn't fail me, there is an awesome party tonight after our show at the Red Label. Xigbar prattles on, telling Demyx how we're all invited because the owner of the house definitely wants us there because apparently (I say apparently way too much) we are his favorite band or something. I turn, grabbing a glass and start making Riku's faggetty, fag iced tea (I need to stop making fun of faggots when I'm such a huge one myself).

"Where's this party at?" I throw a straw into Riku's tea just because I know he hates them, I make it pink just to grind on his nerves a little extra. I've told him about my thoughts on his drink, earned me a nice black eye.

"Hayner's house, he's having a welcome party for some little shits," Xigbar says, taking a few packets of sugar that are sitting on the counter. I don't ask why he wants them because this is Xigbar, asking him a question is like throwing a penny into a well, you'll never get anything out of it. "Apparently his best friend is back in town and he wants to show him how this side of the city parties," he continues, smirking at me when I raise an eyebrow at him. How we party, in other words is simply mountains of drugs, enough alcohol to bring down Attila the Hun and way too many people crammed into someone's house listening to whatever CDs we can find thrown around on the floor by the stereo. Or I usually end up singing on the porch.

Hayner, I roll the name around in my head, searching the vast sea of faces and finally finding one that matches. He's this horny as fuck college kid that's always at the Red Label, he lives off his parents who are never home because they're big shot lawyers. Which is why when he throws a party, you'll find every teenager and adult within a ten mile radius crammed into his mini mansion. He also buys a fucking 8-ball from Riku every Friday.

"Fuckin' hell. Axel make my tea to-go. This fucking custy is blazing down my cell phone," Riku grumbles walking over to the counter and I grab the cup I put his tea in, and pour it into a paper cup. I think Iced Tea tastes disgusting in a paper cup. I also think tea in general is disgusting, but Riku has no taste buds or something because he doesn't care about how anything tastes. Maybe that's why he doesn't realize the absolutely horrendous flavor of coke.

I shove the straw into his cup and he watches me with a glare, I hand him his cup with a smile.

"See you at the party!" I call as Riku walks away sipping from the pink straw; he lifts his hand and sends me the finger as he disappears behind two executives who're walking into the café. I sigh and roll down my sleeves. You can just tell these guys are pricks and definitely not into tattoos, they're probably the type of guys who'll give their kids shit for having more than two earrings in at the same time. I scrunch my nose in distaste as they stare down Xigbar and Demyx. They aren't particularly giving them the look-at-those-nice-kids stare either and the tension is getting so thick you could cut it with a knife. I just know Xiggy is dying to start a fight but is holding back because, hello, I fucking work here.

I send the two douche-bags a look, leaning towards them on the counter and eyeing them in a certain way I just know will make them feel uncomfortable.

I feel like acting like an 80's waitress, so I pop my gum and cock my hip out with a bored expression on my face. They just watch me and I roll my eyes skyward, perfecting the bored-old-waitress-in-a-diner look.

"What can I get you sugah?" I say and watch them send each other a look before they order tentatively.

I love my job.


A/N: A little side note:
Each chapter will alternate. This chapter is in Axel's perspective, the next shall be in Roxas'.

Special thanks to a jolly old friend, PinkFloydLady7, for convincing me to post this.

Hope you all liked it. Let me know if it's worth a shot at continuing.